HDR hardman resources limited

oil trio launch $200m drill-out

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    Oil trio launch $200m drill-out

    JOHN PHACEAS



    Woodside Petroleum and Australian partners Hardman Resources and Roc Oil have committed to one of the biggest drilling campaigns in the world this year to further boost resources near the vaunted Chinguetti oil project off Mauritania.

    Woodside, operator of the Mauritanian joint venture with a 53.8 per cent stake, said yesterday it would drill up to 21 exploration, appraisal and development wells at its acreage containing Chinguetti and the nearby Tiof and Banda fields.

    The campaign, which will begin next month, is expected to cost well over $200 million, with each well set to cost between $7 million and $21 million.

    Hardman managing director Ted Ellyard said the program "would rank as one of the largest continuous deep water drilling campaigns by any joint venture in the world to date".

    Hardman shares surged 13¢ to a record $2.08 on the news, valuing the company at more than $1.3 billion.

    Roc shares jumped 5¢ to $1.58, while Woodside was unchanged at $16.86.

    The commitment of two drill ships for a long duration was an indication of the joint venture's view of the potential of the basin.

 
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